Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand.
57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58 Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.
I have taken my stand on the gospel of Jesus Christ. I spent some months distracted by other things, but the bulk of my life has been defined by the “work of the Lord.” Paul’s encouragement to stand firm must be because it’s easy to waver! Stand firm, let nothing move you. My passion for Jesus, dedication to His Kingdom and the convictions I have in life and ministry are where I need to stand firm, allowing nothing to move me. I need to give myself fully to the work of the Lord. Not half-hearted, not with lip service – but fully engaged, working hard, giving the best of what I have because I know that my “labor is the Lord is not in vain.”
If things were simple and easy all the time, it wouldn’t be labor. It wouldn’t be Kingdom work and I could do it recreationally. Not that I think ministry is never to be fun – it is often very fun – but it is also frequently difficult and painstaking. Ministry requires the best I can bring because it can zap the best out of me. The issues we deal with in the lives of people are not frivolous, but weighty. Sin, repentance, salvation, eternity… these have huge implications! And the people being reached for Christ have issues that are not easily worked through. Give yourself fully to this work – your labor is not in vain. Thankfully God is the One on the frontline. He is the One dealing with people, helping them through their stuff. In serving I come alongside what God is already doing in their lives. I am often the hands, feet and sometimes the voice of Christ to help them grow. Sin is forsaken, salvation is realized, families are rebuilt and Jesus is glorified. It’s true! Although there’s much that would want to sway me, this work in the Kingdom is not in vain.
Lord Jesus – be glorified through me this day. Please strengthen me in this work. Ignite my passion for you; bolster my heart in its commitment to your Kingdom; confirm that my convictions are true to Your heart. In the fray of difficult days I sometimes wonder. Please strengthen my heart for this work you’ve called me to! Thank You for the absolute privilege of serving You as a pastor-teacher in the local church. Thank You for reminding me that You’ve made me for this and for the encouragement to let nothing move me. This labor is not in vain. Please be fruitful through me today. I love You.